Last reviewed by Editorial Team on August 13th, 2018.
This is a small local calcification within the walls of a vein and is usually rounded. They are sometimes referred to as a vein stone. A calcification is when there is an accumulation of calcium salts in the body tissue and usually happens in the formation of bone but can be abnormally deposited in the soft tissue and harden. They are very common in the veins of the lower part of your pelvis. Approximately two percent of the population has phleboliths outside of the pelvic region. Sometimes they are hard to differentiate on x-rays from kidney stones in the ureters. Most of the time phleboliths are harmless but sometimes they are a sign of some other disease. Phleboliths can form clots that are found in deeper or surface veins. The deeper the clot the more risky the condition will be.
This type of phleboliths are present in approximately forty-four percent of people who have them, with fifty percent of them found in females and thirty-seven percent found in males. The amount of phleboliths increase as a person becomes older. Most phleboliths appear on the left side of the pelvic region instead of the right side.
Where phleboliths can occur?
In addition to your pelvic region they can also occur in your:
Most of the time you will not even know that you have phleboliths but there are times when symptoms manifest in some way, which can include:
- Pain in the abdomen, lower back, or pelvis area and is similar to kidney stone pain
- Thrombosis, which can cause your blood to slow down
- Varicose conditions in the veins in your pelvic region
- Warmth at the site
- Swelling and redness may occur
There are many different reasons that a person can develop phleboliths, which include:
- Varicose veins
- Pressure in the veins and injuries to the vein walls can cause urinary phleboliths
- Liver disease can cause lack of blood flow resulting in the formation of phleboliths in the veins of your intestines, stomach, and other organs in your abdominal cavity
- Bowel movements caused by straining can increase the pressure within the tubes and veins of your abdominal organs
- Diverticular disease can cause overworked and extra stress on the muscles lead to increased pressure in the tubes of your colon and can lead to the development of phleboliths.
- Long car rides
- Airplane flights
- Post-surgery immobilization
- Sitting a lot
Having the presence of phleboliths can also be a warning sign that you have a severe condition like colorectal hemangiomas, or benign tumors, growing in your body. The masses of phleboliths could also indicate that you have tumors of the gastrointestinal tract or stomach cancer. It is also possible for the deeper phleboliths clots to turn into an embolism, which is an obstruction in a blood vessel because of a blood clot.
Treating phleboliths is easy. Applying a warm cloth to the area of pain helps a lot. You should also make sure that you are elevating the area above your heart so less blood is forced through the area. You should always try to move around as much as you can. When on long car rides you should stop every couple of hours so you can get out and stretch your legs. If you have a job that requires you to sit and work, stand up and move around occasionally and at break or on lunch take a walk. If playing video games get up and move every couple of hours. When you see your physician for this condition, they will normally prescribe anti-inflammatory medications, which is an important medication when treating phleboliths. Although most are harmless, it is important to treat it and any symptoms immediately to avoid any complications later.
There are several things that you can do to help prevent phleboliths from forming, which include:
- Avoid prolonged periods of inactivity
- Drink lots of fluids daily to avoid dehydration
- Avoid wearing tight clothing